Make Your Own Dish Washing Detergent

15 Wed, 2011 § 2 Comments

It is more rewarding to make my own anything from scratch, even if it’s just to scrub away germs.

The ingredient list is sort of scary once you start looking more closely at conventional cleaners.  The “natural” ones don’t always work as well, aren’t always as natural as they portray & can be on the expensive side.  I like how my own cleaners & detergents work, feel safer using them & am reducing our household waste even more by making my own (ie reducing the amount of packaging we consume).

Before we left Utah, my spinning instructor gave me a few recipes, one of them being for dish washing detergent.  I have been waiting for ours to run out, so I could finally give it a go.

Most of these ingredients come in large containers & can be used to make multiple batches as well as for other household cleaners, such as laundry detergent which I plan to make soon.  At the bottom, I have noted where to find the less familiar ingredients.

Dish Detergent for Machine Washing

48 Loads

~$4.37 = less than $0.10 per load

  • 1/2 citric acid
  • 1 cup Borax
  • 1 cup Super Washing Soda
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt

Combine ingredients & store in a sealed container.  Use 1 T per load.  As a rinse aid, pour distilled vinegar into the aid dispenser.

Notes: After storing it, mine clumped together a little, but that may have been because I forgot the salt when I initially mixed it.  Either way, it still dissolved in the wash & cleaned our dishes wonderfully.  We washed & save an old, unmarked protein powder container as well as the scoop to store & measure our detergent.

A couple weeks ago, I was distracted searching store after store for the detergent ingredients & suddenly ran out of liquid dish soap.  I realized I already had nearly everything I needed on hand, so I decided to throw together this liquid soap as well.

Lavender & Lemon Liquid Dish Soap

  • 2 cups warm water
  • 3 T liquid castile soap
  • 2 tsp vegetable glycerin
  • 2 T distilled white vinegar
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops tea tree oil

Combine ingredients in a bottle & shake gently.  Use about 1 T per sink full.

Notes: I used unscented castile soap because it’s what I had, but feel free to use your favorite scent.  Lavender would be nice.  This is thinner & does not sud like traditional soap, but it will still clean dishes.  It seems to do a better job at cutting through grease.  You can leave out the vegetable glycerin if you can’t find it & don’t want to order it.  The lavender, lemon & tea tree not only smell lovely but have antibacterial properties as well.

Citric Acid ~ Natural Food & Supplement Stores (most expensive here; I got it on sale $2.99/4oz), Nutsonline (best price $3.99/lb), Brewing & Wine-Making supply stores (good prices)

Borax ~ Target ~$4.00 for 76 oz (multiple batches)

Super Washing Soda ~ Ace $4.29 for 55 oz (multiple batches)

Vegetable Glycerin ~ Vitacost $3.99 for 4 oz (multiple uses)

Essential Oils ~ Natural Food & Supplement Stores – essential oils can be expensive; but because they are concentrated & you’ll only ever use a few drops at a time, they last a long time.  (multiple uses)

Liquid Castile Soap ~ This is becoming easier to find; I’ve seen it at Natural Food Stores as well as Target.  Again, it is sort of pricey, but I watch for it to go on sale & buy a large container.  I use it to make all of my cleaning products, to clean wounds & for various other uses & have yet to go through my 32-oz container.  A small amount goes a long way.  (multiple uses)

~

Do you make any of your own cleaners or detergents?

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§ 2 Responses to Make Your Own Dish Washing Detergent

  • Julia says:

    I’ve been wanting to try making my own cleaners, but have been waiting for our current stock to run out. I’m so glad you shared your recipes for them!
    Have a great weekend!

  • Katie says:

    Ohhh this post served as yet ANOTHER reminder that I need to finally get on the homemade cleaning aid bandwagon. I keep meaning to, keep reminding myself to, accumulate some of the ingredients, but in the end always forget to actually do it. The closest I’ve come is using straight Borax to clean my bathroom..

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